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Re: [bug-inetutils] ping, --count=NUMBER

From: Alfred M. Szmidt
Subject: Re: [bug-inetutils] ping, --count=NUMBER
Date: Fri, 22 May 2009 01:55:24 -0400

       Think of `sort -2' etc, which had also been there since
       inception, but that was deprected.

   Well, that deprecation (and coreutils' slavish adherence to it)
   was, IMHO, an incredibly stupid idea, not an improvement in any
   way.  It broke many scripts which ran perfectly fine since day one
   of Unix, with only pedantic gains.  Exactly what we are *not*
   supposed to do in GNU.

That is the crux of the matter I suppose, I prefer that GNU packages
have sane defaults, if tradition dictates something else which is
sub-optimal, then I have no problems breaking it.

   Although ping -c is not exactly in the same category as sort -2 in
   terms of universality, I confess I don't see what terrific gain is
   being made by making it optional, introducing new compatibility
   variables, and so on, and so on.  What's so bad about keeping the
   argument required?  That seems so much simpler.

I often need to use `ping -c 1 gnu.org' to just check if my network
connection is up, and since I am lazy, `ping -c gnu.org' would be

I dislike the idea of introducing a new short-option, since there are
only a few of them, and if another version of ping uses it, then we
have to resolve the conflict somehow, breaking things in the process
no matter what we do.

As for BSD_ME_HARDER, that is just some kind of middle ground, that
would allow both parties to be happy.  BSD type behaviour should be
default, since that seems what most people prefer here.

I wonder how much I have to use the new option to compensate for this
thread... :-)

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